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S.Neil

Discussion Thread for the new Relthoza Model Stats

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 Indeed I am :) For me it makes sense from the rules perspective.

(I don't think it would have made a considerable difference in this case though, the crit rates were met by a large margin... near double crits)

 

meh, I MN as a stat and not a weapon but this isn't the time or place

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How often do you see yourself taking the hardpoint "Upgrade the Shunt Matrix (3) to Shunt Matrix (4)" over Stealth?

 

If you see yourself taking Stealth every time what alternate hardpoint option would give you pause to pick something over Stealth?

 

What would the Iramon more appealing to you?

1. A boost in weapons?

2. Difficult Target?

3. None this ship is awesome!

4. I still would not take for anything more than a cheap tier 2.

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I would take Stealth every time. It's both free and objectively better than one extra shunt die. Ambush would be an option that makes that an actual choice. 

The Iramon has the issue of being in a slot where Relthoza have a lot of options - I honestly can't see it competing at Tier 2, and the only reason I'd ever take them as they are is as a min-strength squadron to create room for more T1 and T3 in a fleet. They bring less firepower than a squadron of Frigates, with worse arcs, for more points. At Patrol fleet in particular they'd be worse than useless, because they're sucking up a valuable T2 slot.


The Virulence needs at least one more AD at every range band, favouring longer range (6/7/8/- would be my preference), and a reversal on the torpedo numbers (2/4/5/6 rather than 6/5/4/2). Relthoza don't have a long-range killer - this could be that. As it is it's too similar to the Bane and doesn't justify the cost difference.

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Ok I am going to fish for a little more on the "Upgrade the Shunt Matrix (3) to Shunt Matrix (4)" over Stealth with a little more details and my other post still stands for anyone who has yet to comment.

 

I'm interested in the WHY very much and again this is used to gather data.

 

Is it the issue of the cost as if they were both free would it be closer of a choice?

 

Is it that you already have Shunt 3 and one extra 6D is not that big of a deal?

 

Do you dislike the current shunt rule so much that is the point that this turns you away?

 

Is Stealth just that strong of a MAR even with the range limitation it is always your go to even on ships that are best used in RB 1? 

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For the Iramon, I'd probably never take it.  Even as a free upgrade, it doesn't offer me anything I want on the ship.  With the extreme short range of the firepower and fixed fore aiming restriction, the last thing I want is even more variability on if I can even shoot or not.  The ship is really, really cheap.  It's also really ineffective for a tier 2.  Due to the terrible PD value, stealth is the obvious better choice between the two current options, as you might actually preserve the squadron long enough to get some useful fire out of them.  Difficult target would provide a different means of accomplishing the same goal, and would be a game-time decision on which one depending on who I'd be facing.  I usually face either Terrans or Aquans, so the low PD means that I don't really have any choice with the squad other than to take some defensive MAR.  I already have enough issues with trying to bubble systems network over the fleet and still maintain a decently flexible deployment, I don't need yet another squadron that has to stay in not only the network bubble but also needs constant interceptor help.

 

Honestly, the ship itself is in an awkward spot for my usual play style.  For me, the T2 choices in Relthoza tend to be the workhorses of my fleet.  I don't see the need for a "filler" unit in the tier, when I'm usually wishing I could figure out how to fit more into the tier anyway.  I think, at least in my meta, it's actually hit the point where it doesn't matter how cheap it is, I'm still not interested.  The ship itself needs either more range, better firing arcs, or more defense.  More range or better arcs would make shunting far more useful to get shots in before it dies, more defense would let it live long enough to use it's current short range.  Either way would be fine.

 

In more general feedback, the new frigates are quite good.  Relthoza have needed some unit that can actually engage at range, so these fill a nice hole in the list possibilities.  

 

The gunships are...odd.  Maybe I haven't grasped what you're supposed to do with them yet, but in the test games I've had so far I've ended up wishing I had just brought shunt cruisers instead.  The extra range from the beams is nice, but fixed fore plays very poorly with shunt.  With the arc restriction, you can only really shunt in a straight line towards or away from your target, or you won't get a shot.  While I can see in theory how this would play with the stealth systems, in reality it wasn't very impressive at all.   There's a very small space to shunt into where you can both shoot your beams effectively (ie not cloaked) and still have defenses in place with stealth active.  I did get a couple of nice activations out of them using this strategy, but the payoff wasn't worth the effort. The range on the guns is impressive for Relthoza, but the AD quantity isn't overly great and there's already plenty of other tools available for getting in close enough to use the short-range weapons.  Based on testing, for "range" I'd rather just continue to use the shunt cruisers and warp around behind enemy fleets or use the Ambush rules with the Destroyers to put a tougher platform into position to engage in a short range brawl.

 

Edit: I second the fact that if gunships keep the current fixed fore then they need more AD to make them an interesting choice.  As it is, they have a shunt that emphasizes movement and an arc setup that punishes them for doing anything interesting with it.  The increased range is a nice idea (and I've always wanted more range in Relthoza), but is oddly unsatisfying.  Their dice pool with a full squadron is unimpressive, and even worse after they start taking damage.  Their shunt rule promotes maneuver, but their arcs punish it.

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How often do you see yourself taking the hardpoint "Upgrade the Shunt Matrix (3) to Shunt Matrix (4)" over Stealth?

 

If you see yourself taking Stealth every time what alternate hardpoint option would give you pause to pick something over Stealth?

 

What would the Iramon more appealing to you?

1. A boost in weapons?

2. Difficult Target?

3. None this ship is awesome!

4. I still would not take for anything more than a cheap tier 2.

 

I'd literally never take the shunt matrix option, over stealth. These ships need stealth to not fold in the first turn (and maybe last for two more).

If I'd consider anything, it'd be sometrhing defensive - elusive target, additional HP/DR/CR (maybe even reinforced (fore) or retractable plating as there's plating on the models that looks it could probably be retractable, but I'm unsure if it'd be worth it if it removes the only direct weapon arc).

 

Probably it would be more appealing with option 1 but my problem with the Iramon is that it currently has no role it would be good in, it's only saving grace is it's cost, and I'd rather have something that does things for more points, then something that keeps consistently doing nothing for relatively cheap (also it competes with the Nidus in points, and that's usually wouldn't be a tough decision for me).

 

I keep thinking about if it had the same loadout lower movement and and MN4 (maybe even only MN3), then I could see it as a dedicated T3/T2 hunter, without seriously threatening T1s and would really consider taking it. It still wouldn't make it better at minelaying then aquan ships, it is fluffy (if I remember correctly, Relthoza used to have mines all over the place in the previous version), and it's a unique role in the fleet.

 

Edit: adding my thoughts on the other ships:

The light frigate is almost in a perfect place for what it wants to do. If I wanted to do something with it, is up it's torpedoes to 4 in RB 3 too, as from T2-T3 with most fleets there will be only so many targets that can be shot on in RB4 even from the table corner, and I haven't been taking the 4x4 tables in patrol fleet levels into account.

I have been testing the gunship, and to add something concrete as a suggestion:

up points to (70-)75

change AD to 7/7/7/- (as I think an even AD would be one of the cornerstones in the design of this ship)

give an option of pack hunters for (at least)10 pts

If stealth is an option in a single hardpoint slot, there is no real need for any other hardpoint to list for this profile, it really really (really) needs it.

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I'd literally never take the shunt matrix option, over stealth. These ships need stealth to not fold in the first turn (and maybe last for two more).

If I'd consider anything, it'd be sometrhing defensive - elusive target, additional HP/DR/CR (maybe even reinforced (fore) or retractable plating as there's plating on the models that looks it could probably be retractable, but I'm unsure if it'd be worth it if it removes the only direct weapon arc).

 

Probably it would be more appealing with option 1 but my problem with the Iramon is that it currently has no role it would be good in, it's only saving grace is it's cost, and I'd rather have something that does things for more points, then something that keeps consistently doing nothing for relatively cheap (also it competes with the Nidus in points, and that's usually wouldn't be a tough decision for me).

 

I keep thinking about if it had the same loadout lower movement and and MN4 (maybe even only MN3), then I could see it as a dedicated T3/T2 hunter, without seriously threatening T1s and would really consider taking it. It still wouldn't make it better at minelaying then aquan ships, it is fluffy (if I remember correctly, Relthoza used to have mines all over the place in the previous version), and it's a unique role in the fleet.

 

Edit: adding my thoughts on the other ships:

The light frigate is almost in a perfect place for what it wants to do. If I wanted to do something with it, is up it's torpedoes to 4 in RB 3 too, as from T2-T3 with most fleets there will be only so many targets that can be shot on in RB4 even from the table corner, and I haven't been taking the 4x4 tables in patrol fleet levels into account.

I have been testing the gunship, and to add something concrete as a suggestion:

up points to (70-)75

change AD to 7/7/7/- (as I think an even AD would be one of the cornerstones in the design of this ship)

give an option of pack hunters for (at least)10 pts

If stealth is an option in a single hardpoint slot, there is no real need for any other hardpoint to list for this profile, it really really (really) needs it.

all valid points but giving the gunship 7's and pack hunter raises it's firepower from 12 to 16 across the board, that's a HUGE jump

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all valid points but giving the gunship 7's and pack hunter raises it's firepower from 12 to 16 across the board, that's a HUGE jump

And it competes with the heavy cruiser in points on a really brittle profile with one arc and still less overall combined AD).

A true glass cannon. (Glass gunship).

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Ok I am going to fish for a little more on the "Upgrade the Shunt Matrix (3) to Shunt Matrix (4)" over Stealth with a little more details and my other post still stands for anyone who has yet to comment.

 

I'm interested in the WHY very much and again this is used to gather data.

 

Is it the issue of the cost as if they were both free would it be closer of a choice?

 

Is it that you already have Shunt 3 and one extra 6D is not that big of a deal?

 

Do you dislike the current shunt rule so much that is the point that this turns you away?

 

Is Stealth just that strong of a MAR even with the range limitation it is always your go to even on ships that are best used in RB 1? 

Adding one D6 of Shunt isn't worth 5 points. It's just not - I love Shunt, but I can get 8D6 of it on Banes for 10 less points per ship than the Virulence, with a better weapon layout, AP, PD, and Wings, with inbuilt Stealth Systems. Honestly, even if it were free it's not worth it compared to Stealth. It needs more to compete with that - a higher shunt count, or maybe extra MARs (Ambush or Minefields would be interesting). 

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all valid points but giving the gunship 7's and pack hunter raises it's firepower from 12 to 16 across the board, that's a HUGE jump

He's also proposing raising the squadron price by about 25% (65 points base to 70/75 points base and +10 for pack hunters).  While raising the squad by 25% and raising firepower by 33% would need to be tested, I don't think it's that radical a suggestion.  Moving up 4AD with a full, undamaged squadron would cost 45+ points, which is not an inconsiderable amount.

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I'm surprised that no one seems to like the budget Cruisers. It's really not like

I do think it shows that maybe they were designed with working with the gunship in mind, but every factions' combined-arms squadrons kind of suck. I think there's a lot of room for a cheap cruiser squadron, just not (yet) sure that this was a good format for one.

I doubt we even SHOULD have a real "long range" option.

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He's also proposing raising the squadron price by about 25% (65 points base to 70/75 points base and +10 for pack hunters).  While raising the squad by 25% and raising firepower by 33% would need to be tested, I don't think it's that radical a suggestion.  Moving up 4AD with a full, undamaged squadron would cost 45+ points, which is not an inconsiderable amount.

Also the last thing I want is an "autoinclude" profile. Even a subpar squadron is better than that, as at least that doesn't make the game boring for both players.

My reasoning was based on comparing it to other available (and opposing) ships of the same cost and/or role.

...

I doubt we even SHOULD have a real "long range" option.

I kind of agree with that even if we already do (the league has excellent options in this field). Even then, I was trying to evaluate the profile in a role that was seemingly intended to fulfill.

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Stealth is almost so good as to never pass it up, especially for a single die of shunt.

 

Both 3 or 4 shunt dice are almost the same. It might be more of a choice if it were an upgrade to 5 or 6.

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I know this is late, but I spent a lot of time play testing the new ships for all the races with 2 friends over the past 2 weeks and I still wanted to post the feedback.  We got in 12 games (all at 800 points taking copious notes) with various race combinations of fleets containing the new ships vs. fleets containing only existing ships and fleets both containing the new ships.  Unfortunately I came down very sick this past weekend and did not have time to polish and submit our feedback and summary battle reports by the 15th.  I still haven't written up the battle summaries, but here were our thoughts and experiences.

 

General Thoughts

After playing a more than a few games I have found that almost all of the new ships are significantly easier to board than existing ships.  The new ships are boarding liabilities, when even facing non-traditional boarding races like Terrans and Aquans.  Even the traditional boarding race's new ships are boarding liabilities.  For example, based on past precedence Tier 2s normally have at least 2-4 AP.  I understand Light Cruisers are suppose to be between Cruisers and Frigates, but I feel they sacrifice too much for too high a points cost and too easily give up Tier 2 Battle Log - especially in the AP numbers.  Besides the boarding issues experienced with the new ships, the Agile MAR seems to be over costed across the board on the new ships.

 

Light Cruisers

Light Cruisers are a hard sell because they are so fragile and cause you to take a Tier 2 Battle Log hit.  I think these would see more play if they remained Tier 2s, but only gave up Tier 3 BL.  Light Cruisers should also be consistent across the races like other Ship Classes and have 3 HP.  There could be a +1 HP Hard Point or upgrade option for the tougher Races.  Something else to watch out for is the Light Cruiser upgrades turning them into worse normal Cruisers, at which point you would just take a base normal Cruiser.  Also, Light Cruisers for races that can take normal Cruisers and Heavy Cruisers in squadrons of 4, make their Light Cruiser squadrons of 3 even worse.  If the Light Cruisers are worse (but cheaper) versions of normal Cruisers that are balanced around squadrons of 4, then the Light Cruiser Squadrons of 3 are even more gimped than normal and much easier to score the same amount of Battle Log points. It would also be interesting if Light Cruiser squadrons could take a Torpedo, Shield, R&D, Shunt, or normal Cruiser as a squadron upgrade.

 

Escort Carriers

I don't know what to think of the Escort Carriers, it feels like they need to be very finely balanced to provide and alternative or supplement to Carriers.  I like how the Dindrenzi Escort Carrier is as tough as their Heavy Cruiser.  I feel like all races Escort Carriers should be as tough as their Heavy Cruiser.  In general I feel that Escort Carriers trade smaller wing capacity, firepower, and point per wing ratio for speed and smaller Battle Log hit.  The escort Carriers are also more difficult to remove, as long as the Carrier doesn't have a Tier 2 accompaniment.  One thing I think all Escort Carriers need is an upgrade or hard point to increase their SRS capacity by 1.  Also, Cruiser squadron upgrades should support both Heavy Cruisers and Escort Cruisers, instead of limiting you to one or the other.  The new Cruiser squadrons that can only take Escort Carrier upgrades don't synergize well at all.  

 

Light Frigates

Light Frigates all seem to have a hard time differentiating themselves from other Frigates and Corvettes for all races.  The Aquan Light Frigate is at least unique with its DR and CR the same, but I don't know if that's a good thing.  Besides being overshadowed by other Frigates and Corvettes, Light Frigates also seem overpriced for what you get.  Given their overlap with existing Tier 3 ships, reducing their price to 10-15 pts may establish their niche.  They could be like the Omnidyne Corvettes at 15 points with either fore or port/starboard weapons.  Another option to make Light Frigates more unique would be to make Elusive Target and/or Agile either standard MARs or upgrade options for Light Frigates.

 

Gunship - Virulence

  • Cruiser stats for Gunship

  • Closely resembles the current Bane Shunt cruiser - which has

  • Shunt Matrix with with FF weapons seems stupid - only used for escaping
  • Only Relthoza with Beams - encourages you to close, which you don't want to do

  • Boarding liability (1 AP), needs to close for optimal range bands
  • Kinetics would have been better than Beams - given we tried to stay at range with this ship
  • Really tough at long range, between DT, cloak, and stealth systems

  • Played well as Long Range Destroyer squadron - Trades brutal medium range AD for better LR AD

  • Weaker than Destroyers and Shunt Cruisers against SRS and torps

  • Will never take Shunt Matrix 4 upgrade - always took Stealth Systems

  • No mines and no boarding actions - fine if playing as destroyer

  • conflicting play style - Difficult Target, Shunt Matrix, Beams, and RB1 torps encourage you to close, while AP1 and only FF and Fore weapons encourage you to stay at range

  • Most success when playing as LR destroyer first half of battle and trying to use Shunt Matrix to jump in near end to eliminate a critical target.

Light Frigate - Erigone

  • Very limited play style - LR torpedo Frigate

  • Did not perform well compared to Nidus or Widow if they got in close to medium range

  • Same points as both above - a little faster, but 0 AP, less AD, and more expensive for the squadron

Light Cruiser - Iramon

  • Worse versions of normal cruiser no one uses

  • +1 Mv, -1 AP, -1 CP, -1 PD, -4 MN (no mines)

  • No Port/Star weapons, Weaker FF primaries and slightly better close range torps

  • When in a vacuum with the cruiser, they seem worth it for just over half the price of a Cruiser

  • Out of a vacuum they were boarding liabilities, could not board others, regretted closing due to lack weapons, and having no mines sucked

  • We were left wishing we spent the points on other Tier 2 ships - Shunt Cruisers, Gunships, or Destroyers

  • The extra HP, DR and CR same as the Cruiser, and cloak did prevent them from giving easy Tier 2 BL, unlike the other race's Light Cruisers

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A few notes- a high CP profile with low AP and moderate PD IS likely to be hurt by a boarding action, but is unlikely to be hurt badly/captured. The Light Cruiser will be slightly more vulnerable, but similarly, except against dedicated boarding squads which are likely able to take on bigger fish anyways, for the Relthozan side of things the relatively high Crew means that the chances of suffering a boarding Crit are not significantly higher than any other similarly sized ship.

People seem a little confused about shunting with a Fore Fixed weapon. As long as your chosen facing follows the path that you shunt in, you do have controll of how your shots line up. You can shunt backwards every turn to harass a ship that wants to broadside, drive up to a ship and then shunt over it to rear-arc, or just use a two-dice shunt to change your facing- if your final facing follows the path of the shunt and the path of the shunt crosses the target's base, your shot will line up.

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Take Hive's last paragraph with Octopus Prime's statement:

Most success when playing as LR destroyer first half of battle and trying to use Shunt Matrix to jump in near end to eliminate a critical target.

And now you know how to use this ship. Beams give it added range over Primaries; use it! Ideally, after you line up a shot and Battle Shunt backwards, the Squadron will be 25-30" away from their target.

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So in the updated fleet guides they've changed the Shunt Matrix MAR for the "Improved Shunt Matrix" MAR (roll per squadron instead of per ship, apply to models that don't have ISM if the ISM ships are accompaniments, which is awesome) for the Taskforce ships.

The Erigone is still small, numerous and very usable. Don't actually think they've made any changes here. Wouldn't use them as accompaniments because the existing options and the Iramon are both better for that role.

The Iramon has gotten a boost - if they keep the proposed accompaniment rules on page 14 they've just become useful, because having two of those accompanying a Brood or an Ootheca AND BASICALLY GIVING THEM SHUNT MATRIX is going to be awesome. Still useless as a standalone squadron IMO. 

The Virulence is still a strategically inflexible waste of points, though at least now it's only 60 each, so anyone making the mistake of taking them will have an extra 15 points to spend on something good - flatten the torp range bands and give it bigger guns, please (Look at the Sorylian Harvester with +1 Shield, or +2AP, and Pack Hunters, which is also 60 points, but they're not even close to the same value). Having them as accompaniments to Theridions would be interesting, but I think Iramons fill this role much better as the weapons have the same range bands as the host and they're cheaper. The main problem (aside from the inadequate firepower) is that it's still a one-trick pony. You put these down, and your opponent knows EXACTLY how they're going to fly - pointing at them, using the ISM to bungee cord backwards in an attempt to stay in the 20"-30" sweet spot. Change ISM so that you can declare a specific point (rather than direction) for your front facing to point at and this issue goes away.

 

Improved Shunt Matrix 3 -> 4 is still never going to get purchased because Stealth Systems is absolutely required to stop our ships from melting before they get in range.

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Improved Shunt Matrix only works if tge ship being accompanied has a Shunt Matrix, and the Shunt Matrix value is the same across all involved ships- so if a Carrier takes Matrix (4), its accompaniment also needs to upgrade from 3 to 4 to gain Improved's benefit.

Also note- Light Cruisers are always T3 for Relthoza.

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My take...

 

Virulence Class Gunship - Not enough punch for the points. - 12 AD even at 30" is nothing to write home about for 180 points. Many better options.

 

Iramon Light Cruiser - Just seems under powered. Sure it is cheap, but I can't really see it doing much. If it did not have fixed guns that might have helped, but i would not take this over a regular cruiser unless I didn't have the points.

 

Erigone - LIGHT FRIGATE - The most interesting of all the new ships. Smalls with buckets of long range dice. Should delete other smalls left out in the open no problem.

 

ASSAULT CARRIER Ootheca Class - I don't play system wars so I see no reason to take. If i want carrier I'll take a carrier. If I want an assaulter I'll take a battlecruiser.

 

ASSAULT CRUISER Cotesia Class - A possible option for assaulting. I would rather have a battlecruiser as it could do something before and after the assault.

 

FRIGATE Ichneumon Class - Well it is cheap and would make a good escort squadron...If only you could take them as escort... 

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In response- 12 AD is plenty at any range, let alone across 30 inches. It's enough to sometimes crit larges and reliably crit mediums- add in the Improved Matrix's ability to keep them together and jumping for rear arc shots is going to make that 12 AD all the sweeter, particularly if you can RB1 for beam rerolls. Add the torps and Difficult and it's a more than decent unit- a very powerful tool for controlling the battle.

Iramons come in at Cruiser defences for 35 points. Holy hell, who cares about guns at that point- that's a lot of Cloaked,(potentially) Stealthed hull for anyone to deal with. Add in that they can be attatched to a stupid variety of ships in the Experimental Accompaniment rules, and that they get bought as T3s... Bonus points, you can now have a fleet that is entirely Shunt Matrixed.

Erigones fill a role Relth have been lacking and can help other ships do the same.

So, yeah. The new ships... I think the two mediums you might be missing the point. Most of what you're paying for is defensive or a relatively unique trait.

As for the Ootheca... There is definately a place for a cloaking, Quick-Launch capable carrier that has no reason to drop cloak. That alone is incredibly tough to shift, and projects a huge threat radius. Imagine... With Fighters, you can reach -out- of Stealth range. That is monstrous.

Cotesia are about to be in a major state of flux once Split Berth is errata'd.

Ichnuemon... Why would you want them as an accompaniment? They're best alone, where they have freedom to give other smalls (and potentially larges) Stealth through Sys Network. In addition, objective focused missions, these guys are cash- think about how stupidly hard it is to eliminate a ship that is Dr4 Cr5, Difficult, Cloaked, has Stealth because of its squadmates' Cloaks, AND has 3 hull. Also imagine the capability of tending to a herd of Erigones with a small group of these.

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